Barnes residents show TfL their substantial support for the 22 bus campaign at public meeting 

Over 500 residents turned up with significant numbers being turned away as Kitson Hall was at full capacity to a public meeting with Transport for London (TfL) in Barnes. 

Gyles Brandreth- a local resident, broadcaster, and former MP - very generously gave up his Saturday afternoon to chair the meeting.  He did a brilliant job delivering the right balance of questioning and entertainment. 

Leon Daniels, Managing Director of Surface Transport at TfL, was challenged on the reasons why TfL were resisting the request of 3,300 residents to extend the 22 bus route in Barnes and questioned on the plans for changes to bus routes during the closure of Hammersmith Bridge for repairs.

During the meeting he:

  • Committed to conduct a thorough review of public transport in Barnes with results by the end of the year 
  • Did not rule out the 22 extension but thought it unlikely due to cost 
  • Acknowledged the need for a link to Putney and across the river to Fulham, especially necessary when Hammersmith Bridge is closed for repairs 
  • Agreed to reduce the cost of policing the buses on the bridge as soon as possible and invest this cost into better buses in Barnes 
  • Agreed to co-ordinate the improvement works at Chalkers Corner and those at Hammersmith Bridge
  • Agreed to a public consultation on temporary changes to bus routes during the closure of Hammersmith Bridge 
  • Agreed to return to Barnes to explain the outcome of the consultation 

During the meeting the following facts emerged: 

  • TfL has no money 
  • The timing of the structural improvement works to Hammersmith Bridge has not been finalised 
  • There will be pedestrian access over Hammersmith Bridge while it is being repaired 
  • The plan is to increase the limit to 18.5 tonnes to allow double decker buses over Hammersmith Bridge but there are no intentions to increase this limit further. 

After the meeting Leon Daniels commented that Barnes is "unique in being an affluent area with significant car ownership calling for better public transport... this is an opportunity". He added that he had: "asked the team to think creatively as to what we can do to make buses more attractive in Barnes so they [residents] use their cars less". 

Tony Arbour (London Assembly Member of SW London) stated "This was the largest community (as opposed to political) meeting I have ever attended int he Borough." 

Chris Bainbridge, Special Transport Projects Adviser, London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham and Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea commented: "It was a very good turnout for a positive campaign - one usually only gets large numbers of people out to oppose things".

The extraordinary turn out was commented upon by all those who support the campaign including Richmond Council councillors and officers, the representatives of our MP Sarah Olney, and the Wetlands Centre. 

Public Meeting

Our public meeting was held at Kitson Hall in Barnes, at 2:30pm on Saturday, 18th March 2017.